Chair Built by Hans the Swede, 1940

"I can imagine life an other way, and by my example I shall show the others."
"Then you figure yourself a prophet?"
"The prophets did not go far enough. I figure myself a god."
"How is it to be a god?"
"It is lonely."

Someone Take These Dreams Away

Nearly Unlucky

(a clarification of prior events for the classy American hero Dustin Bradford)

I liked that she would be entirely disruptive to my life. I liked the chances she had taken and at the time I believed she knew what she was doing, or knew enough. When I saw her in her country I realized she did not know a thing. She lacked style. Her adventures had only succeeded because of luck, and I did not want to be around when that luck ran out. She watched too much television and fell asleep with it on. Her taste in music was poor and undeveloped. She had never read anything in her life. I knew more about her country than she did. Her knees were bad which gave her an excuse to never exercise. Her upper lip bothered me a lot--it was too thin for the lower lip. That upper lip really bothered me. She was 30 years old. She had gained weight from her dancing days and she would gain more. She didn't dress well enough--she'd try to match too many colors and didn't understand certain colors did not work together. I don't like to explain these things to a woman. Her instincts were kicking in and telling her to build a home and make children. She had become very Danish. She smoked cigarettes all the time and smoked pot and hash as she lay in bed watching television. She got drunk whenever she could. It would have been hell there with her. It would have ruined everything I was doing. My training would have been interrupted and lost.

But about her upper lip, even when I was thinking of going I didn't want to go because of it. I thought things might get serious and when they did could I ever really look past that upper lip? Because after the fucking got routine I would have to look at her carefully, and I would see the thin, thin lip that doesn't match the lower lip or even belong on her face and I wasn't sure I could stand it. It took me months to pretend I could do it. But it was just pretend. And then it didn't work out anyway, so I got lucky.


For Americans Who Wish To Become Danish

Let us suppose that instead of being slow, extravagant, inefficient, wasteful, unadaptive, stupid, and at least by tendency corrupt, the state changes its character entirely and becomes infinitely wise, good, disinterested, efficient, so that any man may run to it with any two-penny problem and have it solved for him at once in the wisest and best way possible. Suppose the state close-herds the individual so far as to forestall every conceivable consequence of his own bad judgement, weakness, incompetence; suppose it confiscates all his energy and resources and employs them much more advantageously all around than he can employ them if left to himself. My question still remains--what sort of person is the individual likely to become under those circumstances?

--from "Life, Liberty and..."


Tonight You Take A Part Of My Life

In Medias Res


"Great pleasure is hard to get. Pleasure in most cases is something you have to go outside your control to attain. It is often contingent upon others. But pain you can manufacture yourself--physical pain or emotional pain. So why not privilege pain over pleasure? Moreover, pleasure does not strengthen. Pleasure does not produce heightened confidence. Pleasure makes one weak and soft, unprepared. Pain hardens and strengthens, tests, forces introspection, and the memory of its endurance is lasting.

The pleasures I have known have not been memorable--I cannot easily summon their memory and the experience of them has not altered me in any significant way. The pleasure left quickly and I had to start looking for it again. Those who have endured great pain I find to have much depth-- pain has separated them from the others. While the pleasure seekers I have lived around are some of the least interesting people I have known."


God Maker

To realize that pain is more instructive than pleasure.


Completed Project: J C Higgins 1959

Built in Austria for Sears and Roebuck by Steyr-Daimler-Puch.

Full disassembly and oxalic acid bath, wheels rebuilt with new spokes, recabled, new indicator spindle, new tires and tubes, Kool Stop Salmon pads, new chain, and changed out damaged pedals to a set of early 70s Raleighs.
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